Watch our historic foodways staff cook this recipe, then try it at home
This rich, delicious chocolate creation is a real winner. During colonial times, a single-crusted pie was referred to as a pudding, because pies were to have a top crust. For an even more authentic taste, use our American Heritage Chocolate™ to make the recipe.
Mix a little flour with a pint of cream, and chocolate in proportion, a little sugar, and four eggs; boil it about a quarter of an hour, stirring it continually for fear it should catch at bottom; then put it in the paste [pastry], and the whites of four eggs beat to a snow upon it, glaze it with sugar and bake it. N.B. Coffee-Pie is made after the same manner, boiling two or three dishes of clear coffee with cream instead of Chocolate, as the proceeding, they are both to be done with top crusts.
— Dalrymple, The Practise of Modern Cookery; Adapted to Families of Distinction, as well as Those of the Middling Ranks of Life. To Which is Added a Glossary. p. 357.
- Pie crust for 9” pie plate (homemade or bought)
- 4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate, grated
- 2 cups cream (or substitute skim or lowfat cream)
- 4 whole eggs
- 4 oz. sugar
- 1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
- 4 egg whites
- 1 pinch of cream of tartar
- 2 Tbsp. sugar
For the filling
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Line your pie plate with the pie crust.
- In a saucepan, combine the cream, sugar, flour, and grated chocolate. Cook over medium heat, stirring until the chocolate and sugar are melted. Taste the mixture and add more sugar if necessary. When hot and blended, remove from the burner.
- Whip the eggs well in a separate bowl. Slowly stir ¼ cup of the hot chocolate and cream mixture into the beaten eggs. This will temper the eggs to prevent them from scrambling. Then stir this mixture slowly into the rest of the chocolate mixture. Return the chocolate to the burner and stir mixture until it begins to thicken. Then take it off the heat and let it cool to room temperature.
- Pour cooled custard into the pie shell and bake at 350 for 35 to 45 minutes until the custard is set. Let cool to room temperature and then top with meringue (recipe follows below).
For the meringue
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Before you serve it, prepare a meringue topping. Combine the 4 egg whites and a pinch of cream of tartar and whip them to soft peaks. Slowly add the sugar until stiff peaks are formed.
- Spread the meringue over the top and bake in the oven about 10 minutes or until lightly browned.